Richard Ashdowne

Lecturer in Linguistics

I teach linguistics to undergraduates at colleges across the University, including Somerville.

I provide supervision and teaching for students doing linguistics as part of a degree in Modern Languages and Linguistics, or Psychology, Philosophy, and Linguistics.

My background is in Classics and linguistics. I read Classics as an undergraduate at New College, Oxford, and then completed a DPhil in linguistics, working on aspects of forms of address in Latin and the Romance languages, including their grammar, meanings, and uses. My main interests are in questions of how languages change in general and in the history of Latin and French in particular. Within this my research has often focused on changes that relate to semantics or pragmatics, such as the lexicography of medieval Latin and the history of T/V distinctions in romance languages.

Since finishing my doctorate, I have taught both Classics and linguistics at a number of colleges across Oxford as well as for the university. From 2004 to 2008, I was a member of the Classics Faculty Language Teaching Team and during that time he and James Morwood published Writing Latin (Bristol Classical Press, 2007), an introduction to prose composition in Latin. In 2008 I joined the faculty research project preparing the Dictionary of Medieval Latin from British Sources, first as an assistant editor, in which role I was instrumental in developing the project’s use of technology; from 2011-14 I was the Dictionary’s final editor. Since 2014 I have been Lecturer in Classical Languages at University College, in which role I provide language teaching to the college’s classics students.


‘-mannus makyth man(n)? Latin as an indirect source for English lexical history’
The Multilingual Origins of Standard English

‘Dictionary of Medieval Latin from British Sources’
April 2018

Adams (J.N.) ‘An Anthology of Informal Latin, 200 BC – AD 900. Fifty Texts with Translations and Linguistic Commentary.’ Pp. xii + 719. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016. ISBN: 978-1-107-03977-3.
January 2018
Journal article
Classical Review

January 2017
Latin in Medieval Britain

‘Address systems’
March 2016
The Oxford Guide to the Romance Languages

‘Dictionaries of dead languages’
November 2015
The Oxford Handbook of Lexicography

Löfstedt – (P.) Poccetti (ed.) Einar Löfstedt nei percorsi della linguistica e della filologia latina. Atti del Convegno internazionale, Roma, 6–7 maggio 2004. (Ricerche sulle lingue di frammentaria attestazione 4.) Pp…
October 2009
Journal article
The Classical Review

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